New Zealand PM says Dogra must leave
New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said ex-envoy Harish Dogra could be deported in case he refused to leave.india Updated: Apr 21, 2006 13:22 IST
New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark warned on Thursday that India's top diplomat in Wellington who has been ordered home but is refusing to go could be deported.
She said immigration officials would process any application Harish Dogra made to stay in New Zealand but added, "Of course, if people outstay their welcome, removal is always an option."
Clark said that the government was moving to revoke the diplomatic visa of Dogra, who was India's high commissioner, and his refusal to quit his post was 'very awkward' for everyone.
The Indian government recalled Dogra at the beginning of March, but so far he has refused to leave New Zealand.
New Delhi has formally withdrawn his accreditation and New Zealand has accepted the nomination of veteran diplomat K.P. Ernest as the new envoy who is expected to arrive in Wellington, next week.
Dogra's wife Neeta said that the family had no plans to return to India in the immediate future. "We love New Zealand," she said.
Clark said the couple could apply to remain in the country under arrangements different from those of a diplomat but they had not done so.
"His status has been revoked and he is now expected to make arrangements to leave New Zealand," she said.